Off-colour Guyana play for pride against T&T

Guyana Times article.

Georgetown, Guyana - A demoralised Guyana will be looking to sign off their disastrous regional four-day campaign on a positive note, when they take on tournament leaders Trinidad and Tobago from today at the Guyana National Stadium.

Hit hard by four defeats, Guyana will be eyeing a win to boost their sagging morale in what has been a most depressing campaign.

Guyana languishes in the cellar position on 21 points after five games. They have suffered defeats at the hands of Jamaica, Barbados, Combined Campuses & Colleges and the Leeward Islands before rain saved them from another certain defeat against the Windward Islands.

A cloud of mediocrity has descended on the Guyana side. They have looked vulnerable throughout the tournament and team manager Alvin Johnson has admitted his out-of-contention side has only pride at stake.

“Obviously, we want to finish the tournament with a victory,” Johnson told this publication on Thursday.

“We will be playing for pride; nevertheless we want to win the game. The Trinidadians may be through, but we want to put up a good show and [would] like to finish the tournament with a win.”

Johnson said nothing had so far gone right for his team in the tournament, adding that the performances are not “poor, but rather “shameful”.

Guyana were let down by their batsmen and for a team that relies on its batting prowess, it will be once again a test for the Guyanese batsmen against a T&T attack of quality fast and spin bowlers.

To compound their woes, their most senior batsmen, Shivnarine Chanderpaul has decided to play in the English County championships, while Ramnaresh Sarwan has not yet recovered from his back injury.

Test batsman Narsingh Deonarine, their third most experienced player who has endured a horror season has been dropped, while Assad Fudadin has pulled out from the squad because of injury. He was replaced on Thursday by all-rounder Christopher Barnwell, who himself has had a horror campaign before he was omitted from the squad for Guyana’s last game against the Leeward Islands.

Struggling leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo and out-of-form batsman Vishaul Singh, have also replaced left-arm spinner Veerasammy Permaul and batsman Chanderpaul Hemraj.

A release from the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) on Tuesday evening stated that both Permaul and Hemraj have contracted chicken pox and would not recover in time for the start of the game on Friday.

Bishoo, who was omitted for Guyana’s sixth- round clash against the Leeward Islands, had mixed fortunes with a total of 13 wickets for 366 runs in the five games he played. He captured one five-wicket haul (5/71) against Barbados in the second round, but has struggled thereafter.

The diminutive Singh, who started with an attractive 73 in the second innings against Jamaica, was dropped from the squad for the game against the Combined Campuses and Colleges (CCC) after scores of 5, 1, 14 and 0.

Led by Leon Johnson, who is playing in only his third match due to an injured knee, has been the most fluent batsman this season and is the only Guyanese batsman to score a century.

He, however, will depend heavily on his young players, especially since Guyana’s leading wicket-taker, Veerasammy Permaul, has been ruled out with chicken pox.

On the other hand, bubbling with enthusiasm, the Rayad Emrit-led team is at the top of the Regional Four-day Championship standings with 72 points.

T&T surged to the top of the standings following their 145-run win over Jamaica at Queen’s Park Oval in Port of Spain on Sunday.

T&T  made only one change to their team, with Lendl Simmons coming in for Kieron Pollard who will be unavailable due to his Indian Premier League Twenty20 commitments with Mumbai Indians.

The game commences from 10:00h daily and admission to the venue is free.

The Guyana squad reads: Leon Johnson (captain), Christopher Barnwell, Amir Khan, Trevon Griffith, Tagenarine Chanderpaul, Zaheer Mohamed, Ronsford Beaton, Anthony Bramble, Devendra Bishoo, Shimron Hetmyer, Raun Johnson, Keon Joseph and Vishaul Singh. The coach is Esaun Crandon and the manager is Alvin Johnson.

The T&T squad reads: Reyad Emrit (Captain), Adrian Barath, Evin Lewis, Darren Bravo, Jason Mohammed, Jonathan Augustus, Imran Khan, Steven Katwaroo, Shannon Gabriel, Amit Jaggernauth, Lendl Simmons, Ricky Jaipaul, Marlon Richards. Kelvin Williams (Coach), Manohar Ramsaran (Manager).

First Published In The Guyana Times.

Fri, 04/11/2014 - 03:15